Now that Algerian Special Forces have gone where President Obama feared to tread and ended the hostage standoff at a British Petroleum gas plant, the White House is no doubt resting easier.
With Obama's inaugural party approaching, the last thing the White House crowd wanted was to have a Jimmy Carter-esque hostage crisis juxtaposed on news broadcasts with images of Obama doing the Watusi.
And liberals can breathe easier knowing that the U.S. won't be going into "another" war "over there" somewhere.
Meanwhile, the rest of the world just shakes its head and wonders what's happened to America.
In terms of real world implications, Mali and Algeria may be collateral damage, but they could also be a turning point in the "change" Obama has wrought in the perception of American character.
For starters, we caused the problem when we stood by last year and watched U.S.-trained Malian officers stage a military coup that stirred up enough chaos to open the door to al-Qaida.
The terrorists started sneaking into Algeria and the north of Mali from Libya, where they were coming off the U.S.-instigated fight against Moammar Gadhaffi. During that fight, which Obama never even consulted Congress about, U.S. weapons and training were given to Libyan "insurgents" with the idea that they would oust Gadhaffi and create a stable government beholden to America.
The flaw in the plan was that most of the "insurgents" had ties to al-Qaida and similar terrorist groups -- the same groups we were fighting against for more than a decade.
It's not another war, as liberals fret, it's the same darn war, new front.
The problem is, under Obama, America has lost its will to fight against Islamist terrorism. The Muslim Brotherhood-riddled Obama Administration has turned the War on Terror into the War for Terror. We've switched sides.
It's not that Obama doesn't want to fight. He loves to fight and to squander military resources by stirring up trouble across the Muslim world, in places like Libya, Egypt and Syria. He just doesn't feel the need to fight Muslim terror groups, which he sees as allies or at least as useful tools.
Invariably, these same groups have turned around and bitten America's hand the first chance they get, in Egypt, Benghazi and now Mali and Algeria.
While France and other allies have taken action against the latest al-Qaida flareup, the Obama Administration was content to simply sit by and let them clean up the mess. After all, this was our mess. Drawing more attention to it could have been potentially embarrassing, like the truth about Benghazi would be.
France, Germany, Britain and Italy have all been dragged into Mali at this point. In Syria, we've manipulated Turkey, the rest of NATO and Jordan into a growling match against Russia, Iran and the Syrian regime while we hang in the shadows shipping arms to the alleged "rebels."
So why does Mali, which most Americans haven't even heard of, matter to us? Because unlike previous spasms of violence that sparked two world wars, this time we are the expansionist power seeking to reshape a large chunk of the globe in our own, or rather our president's own, image.
Why would our president do that? Let's take a wild guess and drag out the same charge liberals made against President Bush when we went to war in Iraq: It's the oil.
Our "green" president would love nothing more than to have his hand on the spigot of Mideast oil. He's already blocked development of much of our native resources, and the ability to boss around the rest of the oil-using world while no doubt pocketing wads of cash for himself is alluring.
And he has no scruples against arming our former enemies to achieve his aims, either because he thinks he can win over the Muslims or because he figures he can crush them when the time is right.
I think what we're seeing here is the actual transformation of America into a global pariah as we arm our former enemies, shirk our duties to our allies and create a mess that could blow up at any moment if cooler heads in foreign capitols don't prevail.
He hasn't gotten what he wants yet, and the end game may be far off, but with Mali and Algeria, the depth of Obama's schemes is beginning to come into focus.